Welcome to another Frabjous Friday, where we gather to celebrate our successes and have fun!
I met Corey Neylan when she visited during the Critique Week I held to celebrate Romance Writers on the Journey’s second anniversary. She shared the following story with me in an email, and I was struck by her positive outlook and reminder of the importance of laughter. I invited her to share the tale with you.
Corey is a new writer who is eager to learn from those who have been at it a while, so feel free to share your best writing tips with her in the comments.
If you have good news to celebrate, let us know so we can join in your happy dance.
And now, here’s Corey . . .
Making Lemonade from Life’s Lemons
By Corey Neylan
Five years ago, my car was stolen while I was doing volunteer work at a preschool in a cruddy part of town. I consoled myself by thinking that the chances of anything like that happening to me again would be slim – like the probability of getting struck by lightning twice. I just wouldn’t tempt fate by parking in bad areas.
Last year, I parked in a spot directly outside my townhouse in my nice, generally crime-free suburb. I woke up the next morning to find all four of the wheels removed from my two-year-old Honda.
It was a shocking way to start my day and, as people drove off to work and gawked, I remember several thoughts occurring to me in quick succession: This is not good. This is embarrassing. This will be expensive.
And then I laughed. My car, the car I fondly refer to as a “micro-machine,” looked even more like a child’s toy than usual with its nose on the pavement and its butt in the air. There was a distinct element of the ridiculous to it, and I had to laugh. What else was there to do? It was just a car. I’d survive. Being upset and unhappy and angry would be easy, but it wouldn’t put wheels back on my car, and it wouldn’t help me get through what was shaping up to be a long day.
I tend to live my life this way – laughing when I can or letting go of anger when there’s no point in it – but as a brand new writer, I’ve found it more difficult to apply this attitude to my writing life. It’s harder to let go of the guilt that comes from not writing as much as I should be, or the frustration of a plot-line that won’t work and a character who remains aloof. But when things get really bad, when the wheels in my head haven’t just stopped turning but have been stripped away leaving me lop-sided and out of sorts – on those days especially, I try to remember to laugh. It’s just a story. I’ll survive. But… this is definitely shaping up to be a long day!